Louis Dupré (painter)

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Dupré's 1821 self-portrait, depicting himself in Istanbul, in the act of making a drawing of the environment while wearing a curved Turkish sword.

Louis Dupré (Versailles 9 January 1789 – 12 October 1837 Paris) was a French painter, especially noted for his travels in Greece and other regions within the Ottoman Empire and of his numerous paintings with Orientalist and Philhellene themes.

Louis Dupré had been a student of Jacques-Louis David, and had later become a painter for Jérôme Bonaparte, receiving commissions from the court. Dupré had studied in Italy and had also received commissions during his travels there. He travelled to Greece, during a time when the region's ancient ideals and hellenistic culture had experienced a revival. It also represented a concerning time for the Ottoman Empire, in terms of keeping their territorial regions under control.[1] His visit to Greece was on the very eve of the Greek War of Independence.

He often traveled and changed his work location, including Paris, Kassel (1811–1814), Naples (1814–1816), Rome (1816–1819, 1824–1831), Naples (1819–1820), Istanbul (c. 1820), Greece (c. 1820), Paris (1820–1837), and Vienna (1820–1824).

Travel Book[edit]

Dupré visited Greece in 1819, which had still been part of the Ottoman Empire, and recorded his time there with drawings and descriptions of the people from the different levels of society. His travel book, named Voyage à Athènes et à Constantinople, was produced a few years later after his travels, in 1825. It was released in France after Greece had begun to rebel against the Ottoman Empire. His travel book consists of forty illustrations and accompanied by fifty-two pages of text. [2] 

Gallery[edit]

Dupré's depiction of Greek rebels hoisting the flag at Salona, a scene from the early stages of the Greek War of Independence, clearly indicates the painter's Philhellene sympathies.

Bibliography[edit]

Elisabeth A. Fraser, "Skin of Nation, Body of Empire: Louis Dupré in Ottoman Greece," in Mediterranean Encounters: Artists Between Europe and the Ottoman Empire, 1774-1839, Penn State University Press, 2017. ISBN 978-0-271-07320-0

  1. ^ Fraser, Elizabeth (2017). Mediterranean Encounters: Artists Between Europe and the Ottoman Empire, 1774-1839. University Park, Pennsylvania: The Pennsylvania State University Press. 
  2. ^ Fraser, Elizabeth (2017). Mediterranean Encounters: Artists Between Europe and the Ottoman Empire, 1774-1839. University Park, Pennsylvania: The Pennsylvania State University Press.